It’s been far too long since I’ve written. So long, in fact, that everything I had previously written on my blog has (thanks to someone forgetting to pay the hosting bill) vanished in the ether. And while I may be able to use some Google cache magic to retrieve bits and bytes, it’s unlikely that anything of substance would come of it. So it is, dear reader, that I have decided to start anew. New ideas and a fresh coat of paint on the ol’ blog, and I’m back up and running; ready for conversation.
I believe it’s high time we have a discussion about the necessary behavioral and policy changes needed to stem our negative impact on the planet! I’m often dumbfounded by how little regard we, as a species, pay to our environment. We live with reckless abandon toward our home planet, as if it were an expendable commodity. Much like a virus, whose sole purpose is proliferation through its host, we consume what we need in order to replicate, with nary a thought to the fact that doing so (if left unchecked) will ultimately result in the death of the host. Which, in the case of humans, is this beautiful blue ball we call Earth.
We bring up the carbonized remains of plants and animals which died millions of years ago, burn them, and release their noxious byproducts into the atmosphere so that people like me can “burn the midnight oil” at 2:30am writing a blog post about the detrimental effects of humans on our planet! Yes, the hypocrisy, it burns…
Where’s Captain Planet when you need him?
We are driving species to the brink of extinction faster than we can classify them! Still, we hunt critically endangered animals purely for sport. And we use some half-baked conservation strategy to legitimize our actions and comfort our own consciences (if we have one). Though it does little to bring these species back to life.
We overfish the seas with commercial fishing fleets capable of extracting nearly 3x the amount of fish deemed sustainable. We deforest millions of hectares per year, while only re-seeding a little less than half that amount. We’ve synthesized compounds which don’t degrade (at least not on a timescale relevant to our species), and use those materials to create cheap, disposable products which ultimately find their way to landfills or oceans. In fact, our entire economic model is such that it incentivizes the idea of planned obsolescence!
The entirely human idea of infinite growth—whether of the population or the economy—and consumption for the sake of consumption, these are the ideas which will ultimately lead to the destruction of our species. We must heed the warnings laid before us, else we may well become the first species to go extinct on this planet who had every tool and opportunity to prevent their own demise.
We must realize that growth is but an adolescent phase of life which stops when physical maturity is reached. If growth continues in the period of maturity it is called obesity or cancer. Prescribing growth as the cure for the energy crisis has all the logic of prescribing increasing quantities of food as a remedy for obesity.— Albert A. Bartlett